ERIC Number: ED036261
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1969-Dec-5
Reference Count: 0
Grading and Student Evaluation.
Sparks, David S.
In the Spring of 1968, a joint study group called an Ad Hoc Committee on Grades and Evaluation was created to examine current methods of student evaluation. Several members of the group believed that letter grading on the undergraduate and graduate levels was counterproductive, because grades do not accurately reflect either student performance or capability, and they corrupt the learning situation, because the power to grade puts the ultimate weapon in the hands of the faculty and thus constitutes a form of tyranny. Other critics charged that the present system prevents an individual student from integrating his courses, seminars, and independent study into a meaningful whole. Strongest objection came from students and scholars in the humanities and social sciences where the element of subjectivity is harder to eliminate. Though the faculty has learned to read transcripts with caution, students and the general public tend to take grades at face value, aware that many of the rewards and punishments of academic life are distributed on a very precise calculation of academic averages. While the committee members are fully aware of the many advantages of the traditional grading system, they will recommend a drastic reduction in the amount of letter grading and encourage alternative methods of evaluating students. (AF)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Council of Graduate Schools in the U.S., Washington, DC.
Identifiers: Ad Hoc Committee on Grades and Evaluation
Note: Address to the Ninth Annual Meeting of the Council of Graduate Schools in the U.S., Washington D.C., Dec 4-6, 1969